Match Report


Tue 12 Mar 13

By Ben Blackmore

Crawley recovered from a two-goal deficit to secure a point from an extremely entertaining League One game at Huish Park on Tuesday night.

Reds trailed 2-0 at the break but looked a different side in the second half when they switched back to 4-4-2. Joe Walsh headed Reds back into the game before man-of-the match Matt Sparrow equalised with his second goal for the club.

Mike Jones and Connor Essam both went close late on and Nicky Adams had a penalty appeal turned down in stoppage time but the teams shared the spoils.

Richie Barker made three changes from the goalless draw with Notts County on Saturday. Paul Hayes lined up for his debut whilst Sergio Torres and Billy Clarke also started ahead.

The Reds got off to a slow start and were punished just four minutes into the game. After half-clearing a corner, Glovers' captain Jamie McAllister floated an excellent cross into the box that was met by Byron Webster who headed powerfully into the net.

Reds enjoyed a dominant spell shortly after going behind. Hayes was denied a debut goal by Dan Burn who headed his effort off the line but just when it looked like they might get an equaliser they were hit by a killer blow at the other end.  

A cross from the right-hand side evaded the defence and was slammed home by Paddy Madden from six yards out with 19 minutes on the clock.

Seeking a response, Reds had two great chances to gain a way back into the match.

Hayes was hacked down on the edge of the area and Clarke’s curling free-kick from 20 yards out beat the goalkeeper but came back off the underside of the bar before Hayes fired over from four yards out from a low cross fired in by Mat Sadler when he should have scored.

Needing an early goal in the second half, Reds came out with attacking intent and were rewarded with a route back into the match. Just a minute into the second 45 Sparrow's long free-kick into the box was headed back into the six yard area by Hayes and Walsh nodded it in on the line.

Inspired by the goal, Reds enjoyed a dominant spell and should have been level on the 50-minute mark. Sadler played a one-two with Hayes and found himself clear eight 

yards out but couldn’t beat Stech with a drilled effort which the keeper saved superbly.

Reds looked the more likely to score the next goal with Clarke curling an effort that scraped the crossbar before James Hayter’s header up the other end hit the post and fell into the hands of Jones in a rare Yeovil riposte.

It had been thrilling, end-to end action with Crawley enjoying a good second half and they soon drew deservedly level on 63 minutes.

Clarke released Torres who played in Sparrow with a great pass and the midfielder fired his shot across the keeper and into the bottom corner.

Yeovil were limited to a few chances after the break. Hayter did have the Glovers’ best opportunity but his header cannoned off the post with Jones a spectator.

Connor Essam enjoyed a good game at the back once again and was unlucky not to head a late winner when he met a corner with a bullet header that was cleared off the line.

If we thought that Essam was unlucky then substitute Mike Jones had even less fortune. He capitilised on a defensive mistake to fire a shot against the post with time running out.

A cross from Nicky Adams hit a defender on the hand in stoppage time but the referee waved play on and a breathless night ended with the points shared.

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